Hiring a graphic designer for your business may initially seem like an intimidating ordeal, especially if you haven’t done such a thing before and don’t know much about the industry, but it does not have to.
The truth is that the graphic design industry has its own little rules and things you need to know, but that can all be remedied as we at the LogoCorps are very much in this industry, and what better way than to get insider information in what to do, what to look out for, and best practices to hire the perfect designers for your business, whether it is full-time or on a freelance basis.
Hiring a Designer Isn’t Easy – We Know:
One of the primary and foremost barriers, especially if you are looking to hire someone on a freelance basis from Upwork or Fiverr, is that their talent is not the most important aspect. In fact, their talent and skill is a given.
What you really need to understand is whether or not they are easy to work with, or that they can find a creative solution to a design problem that showcases their level of competence and work ethic towards finishing a project.
For that, here are ten tips to help you get started in hiring a designer for your business.
Tip #1: Always be Forthcoming About What You Want:
The vaguer of a client you are, the more difficulty designers have in getting the project done. Moreover, it also indicates how easy or difficult you are to work with.
This can be especially a problem if you don’t know exactly what to convey to your designer, which means that working together for the both of you isn’t easy, to nobody’s fault in particular.
However, being open and forthcoming about such things can definitely be a step in the right direction. Simply tell your designer about your business, as well as what you need.
Share your deadline, the qualifications you need for your project, and any potential obstacles there might be; restrictions and the like. Chances are that your designer will draft a concept you love on the very first design.
That being said, be sure to understand and go through this process before submitting a proposal.
Tip #2: Understand the Skills that Your Project Needs from a Designer:
First off, you need to get a basic understanding for what a designer needs to be and what skills they need to be great.
If, for example, you require your candidate to take photographs, can they? This might be an extra requirement that not many will have. You should also know the type of program that will be used, such as Adobe Illustrator or Visual Studio, though that is not necessary. Different requirements for your project lead to different requirements, which means that simply going for the best rated freelancer might not be the best option.
Of course, the simpler your requirements, the easier it will be, but that is the reality of such work. Complications add…complications.
Tip #3: For Hiring Full Time, Ask them Something Unexpected:
A common tactic that works for almost any hiring process, is to ask your candidate some unexpected questions during the interview. However, it is very important to keep questions relevant to their job, just not something traditional for an interview.
For example, asking a designer to critique someone’s work, or even asking them about the themes of something they previously did, is not something they are often asked of.
Most of the time interviewers focus on time spent, complication of projects, etc., and don’t delve much into the artistic side of things.
This can be really great in understanding the level of passion and drive a designer has and if they value their creative process. That one unexpected question can yield an answer that can tell anything more about the designer than the rest of the interview.
Tip #4: Resumes and Portfolios Are Not the Be All End All:
Choosing or hiring a graphic designer, or any candidate, based off of their resume alone is rarely the best strategy to go with. This is even more apparent when the agency or business you are hiring for requires more skilled people in their roster.
For example, a candidate has provided their resume that lists their LinkedIn profile, or maybe Imgur or Pinterest where they display some other designs they have as well.
Visit those sites and properly vet your designer candidate before giving them a thumbs up or thumbs down for the recruiters.
You not only will have a better understanding of your candidate, but might even end up with someone who you know suits your brand and your business before you even meet them.
Tip #5: Give Them a Trial Run:
Having small sample projects to offer designers if you really need that extra level of insurance against hiring any bad apples can go a long way into doing things right. Of course, this sample project cannot be used in any commercial purposes if this was made for free, so always consider a low-effort sample that takes very little time to complete to make it as viable as possible for designers.
Tip #6: If They Can’t Visit the Premises, Ask for a Video Interview:
Interviewing a candidate over the phone might not always yield the best results, so simply remove that factor from the equation. A video chat interview can be just as good as a regular interview, especially because it requires some ‘professionalism’ to get set up and ready to begin.
Tip #7: Candidates Should Be Given an Open Invitation:
When hiring for designers, always be sure to ask them what they may require from you. You are not the only one needing their services, so if they are not treated right, or find that they may have better treatment elsewhere, they can pack up and leave, well after or even before they are hired.
Of course, if they are treated especially well, they may even stay at your company—even if offered a better salary package from elsewhere!
Tip #8: You Should Be Able to Explain Your Brand and Target Audience:
You might know what your business or company needs, but your designer might not. Being able to explain to them your requirements is crucial, so understanding your audience and conveying it to the designer is as well.
The creative industry of today is not like being a mechanic or a chef. A mechanic has a car to work with, and can mostly diagnose problems on their own—though they still need your input. A chef creates items from recipes, and knows what ingredient will go into which dish.
A graphic designer, however, creates something from an idea, so it is fundamentally different to get a designer started with their work.
So, always have a firm grasp on your business and its brand before looking for any designers to hire.
Tip #9: Look For Industry-Specific Designers, Not Just Everyone:
This tip harkens back to what was said before. Not every designer will be able to work with you, regardless of how good they are. Most of the time, the top-most designers are ultra-specific about the kind of work they do. They are like doctors that have specialized in one field. A radiologist that has specified in diagnosing and treating diseases through medical imagery will get paid more than your average doctor.
In the same way, a graphic designer that specifically works on 3D art will require way more to work as they need specialized equipment, hardware, and time to create the projects they need.
This also relates to you understanding your customers and targe audience better. If you hire the most expensive 3D artist for designing 2D NFTs, or if you hire a 2D artist for designing high-quality 3D renders of character, you are going to have a bad time.
Tip #10: Talk To Your Designers and Get to Know Them:
Designers and artists all take their inspiration from somewhere, whether it is a book, a movie, a TV show, a video game, art they saw somewhere, a surreal image, nature, etc. Each designer has their own unique inspiration, so talk to them and get to know where they draw inspiration from.
This will help you understand their creative process, and let you get a better sense of the style they try to convey. An artist that focuses on themes and interpretive language will always have a different reason for crafting a certain design than an artist who simply wants things to look ‘cool.’ Both are great in their own sense, but with very different methodologies to their work.
The skillset is just one among many things to look for in a graphic designer. Their creativity, working personality, professionalism, and many more things are of equal importance.
Judge them right with this blog and the ten tips we have given you. Remember, a candidate is more than just a resume.